Thursday, January 26, 2012
Top prospects remaining for SEC schools
By Edward Aschoff
National signing day is so close we can all taste it. Soon, the country's top high school football prospects will be making their college decisions official by signing their names to little pieces of paper.
After talking with the real recruiting minds at ESPN, we've come up with a list of some of the top recruits SEC schools are still after. We took position rankings, the schools' chances and the schools' needs into consideration. This doesn't mean that these are the only ones left, either.
These are just some of the more highly rated players to keep an eye on:
Note: Alabama has very limited room in its recruiting class. Alabama currently has 27 commitments, meaning that some prospects might have to grayshirt or Alabama will have to count back to its 2011 or 2010 classes with early enrollees if there is room to.
Kwon Alexander, #3 OLB, Oxford, Ala./Oxford: He's an extremely talented linebacker who currently has Alabama, Auburn and LSU at the top.
Eddie Goldman, #1 DT, Washington, D.C./Collegiate Academy: He's the No. 1 defensive tackle in the country and he just happens to be the best at a position of need.
Korren Kirven, #8 DT, Lynchburg, Va./Brookville: Alabama's former linebackers coach Sal Sunseri recruited him hard when he was in Tuscaloosa, Ala., so he knows plenty about the Tide.
Jameis Winston, #1 QB, Hueytown, Ala./Hueytown: He's committed to Florida State, but Alabama would love to have him make a last-minute switch to stay in state.
Dorial Green-Beckham, #1 WR, Springfield, Mo./Hillcrest: It sounds like Arkansas is in really good shape with him, but watch out for Missouri.
Jordan Diamond, #10 OT, Chicago, Ill/Simeon: He visited Arkansas last weekend and the Hogs would love to add another lineman.
Davonte Neal, #1 ATH, Scottsdale, Ariz./Chaparral: He could do a lot of damage in Arkansas' offense at wide receiver.
Kwon Alexander, #3 OLB, Oxford, Ala./Oxford: Auburn is in the thick of it for one of the state's best players and needs help at linebacker.
Arik Armstead, #3 OT, Elk Grove, Calif./Pleasant Grove: It's getting pretty tight with he and his brother when it comes to schools, but Auburn got an official.
Stefon Diggs, #3 ATH, Olney, Md./Our Lady of Good Counsel: He's a tremendous athlete and his future will likely be at wide receiver, where he might contribute early at Auburn.
Ricardo Louis, #5 ATH, Miami Beach, Fla./Miami Beach: He was once committed to Auburn, then to Florida State. Now, he's back on the market.
Avery Young, #8 OT, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Palm Beach Gardens: He has gotten extremely close to Auburn's staff and has the Tigers as a finalist.
Nelson Agholor, #6 WR, Tampa, Fla./Berkeley: Agholor can make a lot of plays when he has the ball and Gainesville isn't far from home.
Stefon Diggs, #3 ATH, Olney, Md./Our Lady of Good Counsel: He's the kind of playmaker Florida desperately needs in its offense at receiver.
Josh Harvey-Clemons, #1 OLB, Valdosta, Ga./Lowndes: A big, athletic, fast outside linebacker would be a welcomed addition to Florida's class.
Tracy Howard, #1 CB, Miramar, Fla./Miramar: He's that solid game-changing cover corner Florida wants to add to its defense.
Avery Young, #8 OT, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Palm Beach Gardens: Line depth is needed for the Gators and the staff has been on Young for a while.
Josh Harvey-Clemons, #1 OLB, Valdosta, Ga./Lowndes: He is a real playmaker on the outside and would do well in Todd Grantham's 3-4.
Cordarrelle Patterson, JC WR, Rock Hill, S.C./Hutchinson Community College: He's one of the top JUCO prospects and is a priority for the Bulldogs.
Avery Young, #8 OT, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Palm Beach Gardens: He's an extremely athletic lineman who should really excel at left tackle in college.
Note: Kentucky has 25 commitments, but could be in the same boat as Alabama when it comes to bringing in more signees.
Raphael Andrades, #152 WR, Tallahassee, Fla./Lincoln: He's a bigger receiver and Kentucky sure needs receivers.
Imani Cross, #20 RB, Gainesville, Ga./North Hall: Kentucky needs playmakers in this class and Cross might be able to contribute early.
Kwon Alexander, #3 OLB, Oxford, Ala./Oxford: More Tigers interested in snagging this top linebacker prospect.
Landon Collins, #1 S, Geismar, La/Dutchtown: Collins is committed to Alabama, but his mother prefers LSU and he hasn't signed anything ...
Trae Elston, #10 S, Oxford, Ala./Oxford: He's Alexander's teammate and LSU has come at him hard and will get his final official visit.
Cordarrelle Patterson, JC WR, Rock Hill, S.C./Hutchinson Community College: LSU needs another top-notch WR and Patterson fits that need.
Note: Hey, look, another class that is at 25. Counting back is your friend.
Beniquez Brown, #16 ATH, Florence, Ala./Florence: He can play all over the field, including running back, but he'll likely end up on defense.
Jeremy Liggins #12 ATH, Oxford, Miss/Lafayette: He's a big body and prefers quarterback, but could play multiple positions on offense or even move to defense.
Trae Elston, #10 S, Oxford, Ala/Oxford: Ole Miss needs help on defense and Elston could provide a boost to the secondary.
Khalid Henderson, #19 OLB, Austell, Ga./Pebblebrook: He was a two-way star in high school, but he'll stick to defense in college.
Jeremy Liggins #12 ATH, Oxford, Miss/Lafayette: Ole Miss' staff would like to keep him at home, but would the Rebels take him as a QB?
Tyriq McCord, #13 DE, Tampa, Fla./Jefferson: He is committed to Miami and his parents love the academics there, but South Carolina has recruited him hard.
Note: Some of our recruiting analysts feel that South Carolina is all but wrapped up here, but there's a chance that coaches could still go after a punter.
Quinshad Davis, #51 WR, Gaffney, S.C./Gaffney: Tennessee is search for some offensive playmakers and Davis has that kind of ability in him.
Korren Kirven, #8 DT, Lynchburg, Va./Brookville: Sunseri has recruited him hard at two schools, and has a great relationship with Kirven.
Cordarrelle Patterson, JC WR, Rock Hill, S.C./Hutchinson Community College: He's a big-play WR that the Vols would love to snag this year.
Harding Harper, #97 OLB, Birmingham, Ala./Carver: Vanderbilt wants to add to the linebacker position and the speedy Harper would do that.
Kevin McCoy, #51 OT, Seffner, Fla./Armwood: Vandy needs depth on the offensive line and McCoy would certainly provide that.